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Jun 4, 2015 9:57 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press

UPDATE: East Hampton Woman Tells Police She Confronted O'Neal Before Assault

Jun 8, 2015 1:57 PM

UPDATE: June 8, 1:21 p.m.

According to Irene Foster’s account of the events to police, Brontie O’Neal had been staying with her for the past month to do work in the yard.

When she woke up Saturday morning, she told police, she realized that $200 was no longer in her wallet. She questioned Mr. O’Neal, who responded by punching her in the face and shoving her to the ground, where she hit her head on the refrigerator, she told police. She was able to get to the room of a tenant, who called the police. When the police arrived to the scene, Ms. Foster said that Mr. O’Neal had taken her car and her cell phone but did not know where he went.

Mr. O’Neal is also being charged with the unauthorized use of a vehicle without the owner’s consent and petit larceny, both misdemeanors.


An 83-year-old East Hampton woman was in serious but stable condition at Stony Brook Hospital last week after she was assaulted by her handyman, according to East Hampton Town Police, who responded to a 911 call at 29 Hands Creek Road shortly after 7 a.m. on Saturday, May 30.

Irene Foster, of Northwest Woods, suffered a fractured skull with brain swelling and several broken bones, police said, but was expected to make a full recovery.

East Hampton Town Police Detective Sergeant Greg Schaefer said 50-year-old Brontie O’Neal of Bridgehampton was charged with felony assault for the attack. He was arraigned at East Hampton Justice Court and remanded to the Suffolk County Jail in Riverside in lieu of $50,000 bail.

Police expect to file additional charges against Mr. O’Neal for stealing Ms. Foster’s 2015 Hyundai Elantra following the incident, they said. The investigation is ongoing, police said.

27east reported a similar incident involving Mr. O’Neal in May 2012. According to Southampton Town Police, Mr. O’Neal stole a 2010 Honda Accord from an acquaintance, an elderly woman who had recently passed away. He then sold the car for $5,400 to a another Southampton woman in April 2012.

When Mr. O’Neal could not provide to her the necessary documents for the car, the woman reported it to the police as stolen. Mr. O’Neal was subsequently charged with third-degree grand larceny, a felony.

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